Arsenal held Liverpool to a 1-1 draw at Anfield .

Arsenal maintained their place at the top of the Premier League after a thrilling draw with Liverpool at Anfield.

Victory for either side would have put them top of the table at Christmas but they had to settle for a share of the points in an entertaining encounter.

However, Liverpool regrouped and were level after 29 minutes when Mohamed Salah thrashed a finish high past Gunners keeper David Raya at his near post after collecting Trent Alexander-Arnold’s raking pass.

In between, Liverpool looked to be denied a clear penalty when Odegaard handled and after that Jurgen Klopp’s side had the better opportunities, although Arsenal were always a threat.

Substitute Harvey Elliott grazed the outside of the post while Alexander-Arnold wasted the best chance of the half when he blasted against the bar after Liverpool swamped Arsenal on the counter-attack.

Liverpool were left counting the cost of the failure to find the finishing touch for the second successive league game at Anfield.

They were held to a draw by a stubborn Manchester United last Sunday and had to settle for a point once more in a contest of much higher quality against Arsenal, responding to Gabriel’s early strike with another magnificent goal from Salah.

Manager Jurgen Klopp will reflect on two big moments which mean his side stay behind the Gunners going into Christmas after an often-frenetic meeting at Anfield.

Liverpool will be furious that they seemed to be denied a clear penalty when Odegaard handled in the first half and Alexander-Arnold should have buried what could have been the match-winner late on.

They restricted Arsenal’s opportunities in the second half but this is an outcome that will satisfy Mikel Arteta’s side and perhaps, most of all, new Club World Cup champions Manchester City.

Arsenal would have wanted to make a statement of intent by winning at Anfield, the scene of so many agonies in the past, but Arteta will take plenty from this game aside from the satisfaction of being top of the table.

The Gunners lost their nerve and composure when they were 2-0 up at Anfield last season, eventually being fortunate to get a draw, but here there were signs of a team coming of age and in good shape to mount another serious title challenge this season.

As Anfield responded to Klopp’s call to put Arsenal into a hothouse atmosphere, the Gunners stayed calm despite riding their luck on occasions.

They never felt under siege despite inevitable periods of Liverpool pressure and much of the credit must go to Declan Rice.

The England midfielder was an outstanding presence, winning the ball, never giving it away and acting as a constant source of guidance and encouragement to his team-mates.

Arsenal wanted the win and played to get it but you suspect Arteta may be quietly satisfied after coming away with a point.

Source: BBC

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